?La Liga giants Barcelona are ready to swoop in for Liverpool star man Philippe Coutinho, and have readied a bid of £120m, per Paul Joyce of ?The Times.
The Spanish side were dealt a major blow last week, losing prized asset Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain.
Of course, the raking in of a £198m world-record fee will go a long way in softening the blow, and the club aren’t prepared to rest on their laurels.
Joyce writes that the Catalan side are looking to make the Brazilian midfielder the second most expensive player in the world, but the Reds are holding on firmly and do not want to sell at any price.
I was looking forward to comparing Ozil and Coutinho’s stats this season, shame the latter is leaving for Barcelona
— Mr DT © (@MrDtAFC) August 5, 2017
Coutinho, who only cost the Anfield outfit £8m when he arrived from Inter Milan in 2013, is very open to making the switch, but only if it can be done on amicable terms as he doesn’t wish to upset anyone at Liverpool.
Armed with a much bigger cheque book at the moment, though, Barca are reportedly aiming to test Liverpool’s resolve. They are understood to have made a bid of £72m last month, one that the Reds rebuffed in short order, but the lines of communication are thought to be still open.
While officials at the club aren’t encouraging discussions over Coutinho, their stance could change in the coming days as they are possibly still keen on bringing in Naby Keita from RB Leipzig, as well as Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk.
To date, though, Liverpool are still believed to be unwilling to part ways with the crafty attacker. But only time can tell at this point.
The father of new Paris Saint Germain signing Neymar Jr has fired shots at the Barcelona board – claiming that they are the reason behind him changing his mind to allow the 25-year-old to leave the Nou Camp.
The younger Neymar left Catalonia after PSG activated his £198m buyout clause, but the Spanish club refused to pay Neymar Sr a
“It was a difficult choice, you as a father put yourself in his place, when a son makes a choice, and what do you do, do I force him to stay?
“No, because he will throw it in my face and will say: ‘You did not let me go.’
“He plays football and I manage his career.”
According to the footballer’s dad, the winger made his decision to leave Barcelona on the way home from the club’s tour of China, and he added that Lionel Messi will always be the main man at the club.
The reason behind the Blaugrana’s refusal to pay the bonus is understood to be because the club do not feel the Brazilian deserves it, an inside source being quoted by Marca as saying:
“Resentment is not good, now he must be angry at the retention of the renewal premium, but time will put everyone in their place”.
Despite Neymar’s record transfer capturing the attention of the whole footballing world, Barcelona president
Bartomeu, a Spanish entrepreneur, has criticised the way Neymar left Catalonia this summer. He took the time to compare the Brazilian to his former teammate
Barcelona president Bartomeu says they are a club with 118 years of history, 140,000 members and “not owned by a sheikh or an oligarch”
— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) August 7, 2017
“We always acted responsibly and while we do not share his decision, we do respect it – although that’s not to say we don’t defend our own interests.
“We anticipated that Neymar could leave and that’s why we increased his clause,” Bartomeu continued. “Whatever happened would have been good for Barca. If he stayed, we’d have been left with a great player and if he left we’d have got a great amount of money.
“With the money, we can now make signings, although we will administer the €222m with common sense. We will invest it in players and assets – it won’t all go on signings.
“We will bring in players. The first was [N
Despite completing his world record transfer to
Brazilian legend Ronaldinho, who just like Neymar has played for PSG and Barcelona, believes the player to replace him is Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho.
There are several hot prospects that Barcelona will be monitoring, including Ousmane Dembele, Paulo Dybala and Kyllian Mbappe, but Coutinho seems to be the name on everyone’s lips.
Goal reported Ronaldinho discussing the possibility of Liverpool’s little magician joining Barca: “There are only very few players in the world who can replace Neymar – and I have said I think Coutinho could play for them.”
But Ronaldinho was aware of Liverpool’s current stance on Coutinho, who have said the player is not for sale at any price: “He is at a level where he could fill the gap left by Neymar – But Liverpool will know his worth and after the fees of this summer it will cost Barcelona.”
The Merseyside club have already rejected a £72m bid for the 25-year-old from Barcelona and Jurgen Klopp himself reaffirmed the playmaker will not be leaving the club under any circumstances.
Ronaldinho offered a word of advice to Neymar, having played for both clubs he said: “Barcelona is the bigger club historically but both teams are now at a level where they a competing for big trophies.”
In a heartfelt farewell message, Neymar explained his desire to move to PSG was to face new challenges and his move was against the wishes of his father. The Brazilian sensation was shown off to Parisians yesterday at the Parc des Princes as his lucrative £197m deal was completed.
?Neymar’s move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain this summer will go on to dominate the headlines for a few weeks still.
And in the latest bit, Brazilian publication Globoesporte (H/T ?Marca) are reporting that Neymar’s former club Santos are looking to get their share of the pie as well.
Barca raked in a whopping
As for the second friendly which never took place, the club are said to be looking looking into it a bit further before making a decision.